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Full text of "Poland Russia and Great Britain 1941-1945"

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speed in bringing these people to trial was the last touch to the final act
of the Polish tragedy. It was the elimination of the last batch of the Polish
leaders who were answering firmly Nie I (No !) to the Russian and British
demands for the recognition of Soviet sovereignty over Poland . . .
Sikorski had perished in an air accident... He had claimed that there was
a " limit beyond which no Pole can go." Among those leaders of the
different nations whose Governments had benefited from British hospit-
ality during the war, he had been one of the foremost personalities., and
there was no room for a politician of such status and with such an outlook
in a Russianized Europe . . .
Sosnkowski, an even more important figure for the Polish people than
Sikorski, was evicted from his place by diplomatic pressure combined
with a scurrilous press propaganda which was brought to such a pitch
that for some time at least, it seemed as if the problem of Russo-British
unity entirely depended upon how quickly Sosnkowski was removed
from office. Therefore the Polish Commander-in-Chief gave up his
post. . . His successor, Bor-Komorowski, then fighting a desperate battle
in Warsaw against the might of Germany, was immediately proclaimed
by Aloscow as a traitor of Poland ...
President Raczkiewicz and all the ministers of Sikorski, Mikolajczyk
and Arciszewski's Cabinet were treated by Moscow as a gang of Hitler's
collaborators from the moment of the severance of Russo-Polish diplo-
matic relations. The road of understanding with the U.S.S.R., and an
eventual return to Poland, was barred to them. Several of the Ministers
from the pre-war Polish Government, found by the N.K.V.D., in Rumania
had been taken from their internment camp and locked in the Russian
prisons to await their trial by some future Soviet-Polish puppet govern-
ment as being guilty of Poland's defeat in 1939. Eminent politicians in
Poland had been taken under Soviet arrest in the wholesale round-ups.
And when the last, and most important members of the legal Polish Govern-
ment—its Home Cabinet, were eliminated by imprisonment, the final
disturbing element was removed, and the Soviets, with their e Lublin
Committee' in Poland, felt strong enough to wait for what the future
was to biicg forth.
To the Big Three, the heart of the Polish problem lay in the difficulty
of building the new Polish Government which had been provided for in
the Yalta Agreement. While Russia intended using the ' Lublin Com-
mittee * as the main body, merely adding a few unimportant personalities
to it, Britain and America wanted to dismiss this body altogether and
build up from the bottom. Between the two existed a vast chasm which
would have to be bridged before a solution could be found. The next
move was made by American diplomacy, which, from the start of the
war with Japan, had endeavoured to gain Russian participation, although,
as far as Russia was concerned, it was indeed hardly in her interests to